With its dependence on an ever-decreasing supply of oil, coal, and natural gas, America will eventually come to a crossroads where such supplies are too small to meet the country’s demands. The big debate among futurists is will America survive these crossroads by adapting and finding an alternative energy source, or will society collapse in a never ending battle for increasingly scarce resources?
Will America Survive an Oil Shortage?
According to studies by the University of Omaha’s economics department, the United States consumes 25% of the world’s oil, which amounts to 19.6 million barrels daily. The consensus among futurists is that America will exhaust its oil supply in no more than forty years. In reality, this is an optimistic prediction because it does not take into account the predicted 2% yearly increase. This means that in just five years America will be consuming 35% of the world’s oil.
In order for America to survive when the oil runs out, the government must invest in the research and development of alternative energy sources. Steps towards this can be seen today in the hybrid and fully electric cars that are now on the market. Many homes are also turning to solar and wind power to limit electricity use. The more widespread these alternative energy strategies become, the better is America’s chance of surviving when its oil supplies are depleted.
The Issue of Nuclear War
With tensions always near a breaking point with Iran and North Korea over nuclear energy programs, the fear of a nuclear war is omnipresent. If either country were to attack America with a nuclear strike, the death toll would be in the tens of thousands. While many people would perish, America would surely survive such an attack since it is much larger in size and has a much larger arsenal of nuclear warheads.
The only true nuclear threat comes from Russia, whose nuclear arsenal is the only one that comes close to America. Even if that situation should occur, America would still likely survive such an attack, although casualties would be in the millions.
Will America Survive a Water Shortage?
As the population keeps growing, water levels at reserves across the country are hitting historic lows. If this trend continues, then America will face a severe water shortage within the century. While those lucky enough to live close to large water sources will be slow to feel the effects, those who dwell in desert states like Arizona and New Mexico will be considerably less fortunate.
In addition to a restriction on water usage, the water shortage will affect farmers needing to water their crops. If the situation gets bad enough, farmers will have to cut down on the amount of food they produce, which will also lead to food shortages across the nation. These food shortages, coupled with the ever-growing population, could prove catastrophic for America.
The survival of America depends on the dedication of both its leaders and its citizens in using other sources for energy besides the dwindling fossil fuels. If everyone collaborates and starts using alternative energy sources, then the question ‘will America survive?’ will be asked less and less often until it is no longer asked at all.